Salma Zubair from Gulistan-e-Jauhar is a widow who sells food on a street near her house

Salma lost her husband to a road accident some time ago, who remained in the ICU for some time before passing. The expenses of her husband’s treatment cost her and her family more than they could afford, and Salma was left with an entire house to feed and no source of income, coupled with the loss of a lot of money.

Salma took it upon herself to sustain her family’s needs without anyone else’s aid and to do so, she decided to use her cooking skills. With 12 people in her family to take care of, including her sons, her daughter-in-laws and her grandchildren Salma first joined a university canteen where she earned up to Rs. 3000. She then invested that money into buying kitchen utensils, such as pots, pans, containers, and other things. Before long, she had set up a temporary hotel at the end of a street in New Karachi.

18 months later, the hotel is now relatively popular, attracting mostly daily wage labourers, but also occasionally catering to nearby office goers as well. The hotel’s most expensive dish is for Rs. 140, and her regular customers trust her cooking and culinary skills, so Salma is now approached for catering as well.

Upon speaking to a private news source, Salma told them “it is part of her hotel’s policy that not one person should go away hungry”.

Salma is currently waiting for three of her sons to finish their education, so that she can finally retire. In the meantime, though, she is happy to be able to provide for her family through her hard work, and hopes to empower other people to do the same.

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